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Sri Lanka stocks soar after losing UN vote

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka stocks soared 2.24 percent Wednesday after the island as stock investors shrugged off a vote at the UN human rights commission that called for gathering of evidence for future prosecutions.

The Colombo benchmark All Share Price Index gained 156.55 points to close at 7,135.84, led by Browns Investments and LOLC Holdings and Expolanka Holdings driving the index up, broker said.

The index fell during the first hour into trading reaching a daily low at 6,919.48 but picked and continued to increase throughout the day.

The S&P SL20 index of more liquid stocks gained 2.78 percent or 77.85 points to close at 2,879.64.

The index gained despite UN Human Rights Council approving a resolution that called for the collection of evidence for future prosecutions of war crimes by member countries.

The UN council allocated funds for the Office of the High Commissioner “to collect, consolidate, analyse and preserve information and evidence and to develop possible strategies for future accountability processes for gross violations of human rights or serious violations of international humanitarian law in Sri Lanka, to advocate for victims and survivors, and to support relevant judicial and other proceedings, including in Member States, with competent jurisdiction.”

The resolution expressed concern that the Covid-19 pandemic has hit “freedom of religion or belief and exacerbated the prevailing marginalization of and discrimination against the Muslim community, and that cremations for those deceased from COVID-19 have prevented Muslims and members of other religions from practicing their own burial religious rites, and has disproportionately affected religious minorities and exacerbated distress and tensions.”

The resolution expressed serious concern over the trends seen in the past year which it said was a “clear early warning sign of a deteriorating situation of human rights in Sri Lanka, including the accelerating militarization of civilian government functions; the erosion of the independence of the judiciary and key institutions responsible for the promotion and protection of human rights.”

The resolution order the UN Human Rights Commissioner to give an oral update to the Rights Council at its forty-eighth session, and a written update at its forty-ninth session and a “comprehensive report that includes further options for advancing accountability” at its fifty-first session.

Turnover was 1.5 billion rupees with 144 stocks gaining and 29 falling.

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Investors shrugged off the vote and bought into

LOLC Holdings gained 14.00 rupees to close at 302.50 rupees.

LOLC Finance closed 40 cents up at 6.10 rupees, Browns and Company gained 10.00 rupees to close at 159.75 rupees and Browns Investment closed 50 cents upat 5.30 rupees.

Expolanka gained 2.50 rupees up to close at 46.00 rupees and Melstacorp Holdings closed 60 cents up at 44.10 rupees a share.

DhammikaPerera’sVallibel One gained 2.50 rupees to close at 49.50 rupees and John Keells Holdings closed flat at 150.00 rupees.

Hayleys Plc closed 3.20 rupees up at 58.20 rupees with key subsidiaries Dipped Products gaining 1.70 rupees to close at 46.70 rupees and Haycarb Plc gaining 5.40 rupees to close at 98.80 rupees.

The Kingsbusry closed 40 cents up at 6.00 rupees while Singer Sri Lanka closed 10 cents down at 17.40 rupees.

Commercial Bank of Ceylon closed 2.40 rupeesup at 89.60 rupees and Hatton National Bank closed 2.00 rupees up at 130.00 rupees.

DFCC Bank closed 50 centsup at 60.00 rupees, and Nations Trust Bankclosed 20 centsup at 54.00 rupees.

Seylan Bank closed 70 centsup at 50.30 rupees and Pan Asia Banking Corporation closed 60 cents up at 15.00 rupees.

Central Finance Company closed 2.20 rupeesup at 83.90 rupees whileHousing Development Finance fell 1.00 rupees to close at 35.40 rupees.

Royal Ceramic Lanka closed 13.50 rupees up at 260.75 rupees, Lanka tiles gained10.25rupees to close at 187.00 rupees, Lanka Walltiles closed 11.25 rupees up at 191.75 rupees.

Cargills Ceylon closed 2.00 rupees down at 233.00 rupees, Hemas Holdings closed 80 cents up at 80.70 rupees andCeylon Grain Elevators gain 4.00 rupees to close at 115.25 rupeesand Distilleries Company gain 20 cents to close at 20.00 rupees.

In the hotel sector Eden Hotel Lanka closed flatat 10.00 rupees, John Keels Hotels closed 10 centsdown at 9.60while Aitken Spence Hotel holdings closed 1.00 rupee upat 29.50 rupees.

Carson Cumberbatch closed25 cents downat 274.75 rupees while Access Engineering gain 30 cents to close at 22.10 rupees.

Nestle Lanka closed 11.00 rupees up at 1,160.75 rupees and Aitken Spence Plc closed 3.40 rupees up atat 55.80 rupees.

Sri Lanka Telecom closed flat at 32.20 rupees, Dialog Axiata closed 10 cents up at 12.90 rupees and Richard Pieris and Company closed 20 cents up at 16.40 rupees.

Ceylon Tobacco Company closed flat at 999.75 rupees while Ceylon Cold stores closed 5.00 rupees up at 606.25 rupees and Piramal Glass Ceylon closed 20 cents upat 9.80 rupees.

The Capital Goods Industry was the most active, gain 2.5percent today. (Colombo/March 24/2021)

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